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World of Warcraft…To…Warlords of Draenor?

WoW W Logo
World of Warcraft for those that may not know is a MMORPG (Massively Multi-player Online Role Playing Game) for which, I would say, all newer similar games are based on (Like Aeon, Rift, Wildstar, and Star Wars: The Old Republic.). All of these type of games create worlds that millions of players can get lost in. World of Warcraft is about the constant struggle of two factions (the Alliance and the Horde) control of power in the world of Azeroth. I have setup an image gallery slider which goes up the timeline of the Warcraft series. You will be able to get the story this way (for the most part. There is so much to the game actually.) and if you need more time to read each slide just move you mouse over it. This will pause the slide for you.

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Slider content Copyright Blizzard Entertainment

 

 

As you can see there is a rather large story to the game. They should make a movie out it. (Actually there is talk of a movie floating around the internet. I wonder when that movie will come out.) It would make for a cool movie. Anyways, Warlords of Draenor is another chapter to the World of Warcraft storyline that requires some history in order to get the full idea. Blizzard has done a great job at making sure you know what is up with this new expansion. I could go on and let you read the long story behind it but quite frankly, that won’t quite do it. I like visuals, do you like visuals. In fact you just simply have to see it for yourself to really get a feel here of the game.


LordsOfWar Part One – Kargath

Lords of War Part 2 – Gromash

Lords of War Part 3 – Durotan

Lords of War Part 4 – Kilrogg

Lords of War Part 5 – Maraad

Warlords of Draenor Cinematic

 

 

The game has really changed over the years and has only gotten better. I am not an old school World of Warcraft fan. I remember the game talked about during the years but I never got into actually playing it. The game has been been referred to as crack. Having its name changed to World of Warcrack by gamers due to its addictive nature. I have even seen an actual news story of a guy who played the game 19 hours a day while neglecting his family. I’m telling you this guy brought the bathroom to his room. There was a parody done of the game on South Park. It was rather funny cause I understood cause for a time I was addicted. Now…I still play but just not I used to. Although the day still arises when the addiction kicks in and you start playing and next thing you know the whole day is gone leaving you with your hands and fingers hurting from all the typing and you still play through it anyways. Can anyone say Carpal tunnel? The news story talked about this guy as if he was a drug addict. You have to see how it has changed. So I put together some Youtube links of the actually gameplay of all the Warcraft games that I will place at the end of this post. Enjoy…but first I recently was given access to the beta of Warlords of Draenor. The video starts off at the portal and the battle is on from the start. I was checking things out to get a look at the starting area. So far the game looks cool and I like the changes. You are like pushing your way deeper into the new area. I am not gonna get into too many details though if you want detail of all the additions and changes you can find them here.

This next video is of a new dungeon, The Bloodmaul Slag Mines. Now the FPS (Frames per Second) got crazy at the end of the video during a boss fight so I had to stop it but it gives you an idea of how players in the game can work together to pass huge obstacles. Each player in your dungeon group has a role to player whether damage, healer, or tank. The tank is who has the higher gear and get in the fight first to get all of the attention and to keep that attention while the healer keeps him alive during the fight. The rest are damage whether ranged (Like I am) or melee. Damage job is to get those enemies down faster. Dungeons are usually 5 man but there are Raids with can go from 10 to 25 players to knock out much stronger bosses. The point of it is for better gear. The bosses drop higher level gear that is passed out in a raid in a sort of chance process.

 

 

Gameplay History of Warcraft

World of Warcraft is though a subscription based game. Some may not be into having to pay monthly for a game but really even mobile games you may end up paying something. The usual pattern for World of Warcraft is once major updates and expansion are out players come out the woodwork to play. Once said players acquire the all the content by leveling their characters and have seen all there is to see with the new updates they usually take a break. So you see up times and down times but for the most part World of Warcraft stays busy enough to play and still have fun doing so. In the game there are different ways you can play, see its a player vs. player game, but; you do do not want to get into that part of it you do not have to. You simply choose what is referred to as a PVE (Player Versus Environment) server when creating your character. Although it is fun to kill other players. Even when you have seen all there is to see you can still have fun in battlegrounds. Once you get 1 or more high level toons you can use them to acquire heirloom gear that adapts to your level as you play with those new toons. You buy it then mail it to the low toons you just created. Blizzard has added more to this in allowing you to enchant (a way to add to the stats) the heirlooms. The enchants will also adapt to your current level. This takes a lot of the work of finding gear at lower levels and makes you quite frankly overpowered at your level until a certain level where it becomes better to find other gear. Using this idea player create what is referred to as Twinks. A toon with the highest or close to the highest gear you can get at a particular level making them dengerous in lower level battlegrounds. If done correctly some can take you out with 1 to 2 hits. If you are the one killing it makes for a very fun game. I have 3 videos to show you of this. In the videos I am in the battleground called Arathi Basin. The basin is rich with resources and both the Horde and the Alliance want it. You are fighting for its resources so you assault and defend locations or resource nodes and the first to gain 1600 resources wins. (note: I did not record the whole battle it would take up too much hard drive space initially if  I even have enough space to hold for a bout 30 mins.)


Arathi Basin Starting Area

Arathi Basin – Taking Lumber Mill

Arathi Basin End of Battleground

 

 

So I got about 38 kills. It’s okay. I prefer to get about 50 kills but I only died about 3 times. That’s good so I can’t complain. Now on to the Warcraft gameplay videos. I’m gonna post the first few. I don’t really need to take it World of Warcraft because I just showed you me doing a little bit of battlegrounds plus the latter videos showing the newest expansion in beta coming out in November. If you do decide to try out the game do it now. Basically buy the game. You can get it at a discount now and pre-order the expansion: Warlords of Draenor. Why? Well Blizzard is giving away level 90 character boosts to those who pre-order. Best case scenario: Buy the game and preorder then play your new toon to level 60. Remember to choose professions on your toon too. Doing this will get you an extra edge come expansion day because under these conditions the boost you get to 90 will also level your professions to their max level. A lot of time will be save in that trust. So get playing. If you need help let me know. Post a reply and I will get back with you. If you play already feel free to post your server and use this post to find freinds.

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Warcraft: Orcs and Humans

Warcraft 2: Tides of Darkness

Warcraft 2: Beyond The Dark Portal

 

 


Warcraft 3: Reign of Chaos

Warcraft 3: Frozen Throne

 

 

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The Apple iPhone 6 has arrived……(A bit late though.)

Finally Apple has come out with a phone to compete with the market and I must say it is a nice looking phone but that is nothing new when it comes to Apple products. Apple is now doing things different (for them anyways) and has made a larger iphone. In fact, they made 2 larger iphones. Now if you want some specs on the phones just check out a previous post, APPLE’S SPENDING HAS INCREASED… IPHONE 6 LAUNCH COMING?, on Ninja Tech forums where I talk about the rumors of the phone that were out before launch.I’m just going to get straight to the point here. I have seen the phones and I do like them. While holding the phone it feels metal and sturdy, yet a bit slippery. The phones are thinner and do feel better in your hands. I looked closely at each one and they look to be well designed and they have the curved ends that iphone fans should not find as a new thing. The design actually reminds me of the original iphones starting from the 1st generation to the iphone 3GS but only thinner. Let’s not forget that these also had the rounded curves. It wasn’t until the iphone 4 that the blocky design was used.

I like the metal Apple logo on the back yet it is a definite fingerprint magnet. As I picked up the phone on the display I saw the previous customer’s fingerprint and looking at it I thought, “Man his hands must be dirty.” Mind you I saw the person and he looked clean, I guess, but whatever residue he had on his hands were easily seen on the logo. The iphone 6 was really light and felt good I must say but I myself not being so easily impressed looked closer at the phone and I saw the screen curving at the edges. I tested this by swiping my finger across the edge and yep.  My first reaction was good but then I started to think then asked myself, “What would happen if I dropped the phone one day?” and from what I know the result did not seem good to me.  Now I have dropped my Note 3 and the metal bezel caught a ding while the glass and everything is fine but the same kind of fall my Note 3 took, if it were to occur on the iphone… The impact would affect the screen more given the curved design of the phone.  As I looked away at the phone I began to hear T-mobile reps pushing customers to get the insurance. Even stating that the wait for the phone will be shorter for those that get the insurance. I wonder why that it. So I look around the web for drop tests and find that the iphone in most of those tests have not held up.  Here are a few you can check out:

 

This test by Android Authority is thought of as very skeptical by most viewers since most of the test done by other users have different results but if you want durability who are you gonna believe? the minority or the majority?

I have decided to also include the bent tests for the Note 3 and the iphone 6 plus.

 

 

As you can see the screen cracked on a flat out on the screen fall. I have don’t this on my Note 3 and the noise it made did not sound good at all but the phone is still fine and kicking. Shoot some may never even be able to tell that I dropped it. The iPhone 6 drops tests concern me and anyone going out to purchase one make sure you buy the insurance. Now get this, I heard a story of a person who dropped his iPhone 6 (already?) Watch the video and remember this is on  the first day. This guy I think may be the first customer to have it.

Dude?… can you imagine just buying the phone after camping out to get it and you drop it? I hope Apple sees the video and helps him out just because I can feel that just watching  the video and it  does not feel good. (My empathy at play here.) Well, moving along I learn what is on the inside of  the phone and I personally am not impressed. The specs are fine for most but they remind me of the commercials of the Note 4 that I have seen and the question that comes to mind is “Didn’t an earlier Google Nexus phone have similar specs as this?” Seriously, a dual-core processor? Okay it is a 64-bit processor with a coprocessor (M8) to handle the phone’s motion capabilities while rocking 1GB of DDR3 RAM. Oh and the graphics chip is quad-core, a detail which saves the phone in my book.  This graphics chip should serve the phone well for gamers. I’m going to move on to some pros and cons to help you decide.





Apple iPhone 6

Pros

  • New Sleek design
  • Confortable to hold
  • Fast performance
  • Great display
  • Good camera (generally)

Cons

  • Lacks Optical Image Stabilization
  • Battery Life is okay
  • NFC can only be used for mobile payments

 

The iPhone 6 with the larger screen is still confortable to hold. My initial testing shows it to be fast and the display was okay to me. Although Samsung’s AMOLED screens are still better from what I can see. The iPhone screens just didn’t seem as bright to me. (A little screen brightness adjusting may fix that though.) This iphone does not have the same battery which translates to shorter battery life as the iPhone 6 Plus. This detail has been mentioned in other reviews throughout the web also just in case you want more proof. The Optical Image Stabilization is also not present but the phone is a good choice for most people.

 


Apple iPhone 6 Plus

Pros

  • Long Battery Life
  • Great camera with Optical Image Stabilization
  • Fast performance
  • Large great display

Cons

  • One-handed use is  not for everyone and can be uncomfortable
  • NFC can only be used for mobile payments

 

The iPhone 6 Plus some would say is difficult to use one-handed but that really depends on what you are used to and how big your hands are. Although I have heard it mentioned that the phone is more uncomfortable than similar phones of its size. Now I like my Note 3 and its shape at times has help me catch it before it fell due to the more square look and the metalic bezel. I literally had the phone at my finger tips at times but you cannot beat having enough screen real estate for the playing of games, movies, and web surfing. So with the larger size you do get an iPad-like experience on a small device. The phone is said also in all areas that it does have better battery life then the smaller iPhone 6. The camera is also better which can the a deciding factor for some.

 

Overall both phones are great phones and at different sizes, Apple will be able to cut into the ‘phablet’ market that Samsung has started with the Note series. The iphone 6 looks great but inside the hood is just mid to mid-high components. Again Apple has cut a few corners by doing what it does best, take lower end hardware and create a cult of fans by captivating the senses with great looks. Smartphones in general are said to be more and have more features than what a lot people will ever use. There is also website all over the web talk about Apple fans being people who think different and are more artistic. If that is the case then why are they settling for the mere great looks of an iPhone and not buying a Samsung Note device? The answer for most is simply to be cool. Oooooh I have an iPhone and I will defend it to the end with false Pros and true Cons, despite of the fact which prove otherwise. Then again having a lot of features just isn’t a concern and just want a cool smartphone with simplicity.  In that I do agree but with any device there are quirks. The iPhone just isn’t for me due to having been spoiled by the Galaxy Note’s S-Pen but to anyone who hasn’t been spoiled like me I would recommend the iPhone most definitely as a 2 year phone. What I mean is, sure get the phone, but when upgrade time comes get a different phone so you can actuallly feel like you upgraded because the iphone experience has not really changed that much over the years. The idea of improving the integration and interactivity of iphones with other Apples would be the only change you will find. So if I was an iPhone 5 user that actually put my phone to use by using as many features as I can find a use for then upgrade to the iPhone 6 Plus. If most of what you do is talk then there is no large reason (a cracked screen would be  good reason) to upgrade from any iPhone 4 or 5 other than to simply have the newest (and greatest……supposedly) phone.  So you cannot go wrong with the iPhone really just make sure you get nsurance on it and protect the phone with a case and screen cover.

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Samsung Galaxy Note 4

 

 

 

 

In 2011 at IFA Samsung announced the Galaxy Note. While some if not most media outlets questioned the device due to its 5.3 inch screen (which most considered extremely large for a phone), but the Note did quite well. It was received positively due to its stylus, the screen proving useful, and the speed of its 1.4ghz dual-core processor.  Proving to be a success Samsung announced that the Note had sold 1 million units in 2 months. Two months later Samsung made a version of the Note with LTE support. Six months after that the Note sold 10 millions units worldwide.

In 2012 at IFA Samsung displayed the Note 2. The Note 2 was an improvement to the Note in the hardware area sporting a quad-core processor and a larger 5.5 inch screen. Samsung revised the stylus to be more sensitive to pressure (1024 levels of pressure sensitivity) for a more precise feel. Samsung like to make the lines of devices similar in look and the Note 2’s design was based on the Galaxy S3. The Note 2 has other new features like pen gestures, split-screen multitasking, other features that the S3 came out with, and Air View which allows previews of content to be displayed by hovering the pen above the screen.

The Note series opened the doors for artists in mind which spawned apps for the graphic artists like PS Touch (Photoshop Touch) and SketchBook which Samsung had included. Next came the Note 3 in 2013 showing off a more “premium” design with a plastic leather backing, more stylus pen functionality, and a 5.7 inch 1080p screen. The new “premium” design was something to cater to  the world due companies coming out with devices with (I guess) better design chassis. Phones like the iphone 5 and the  HTC One. People liked the HTC Once due to it metal (premium) body. I thought the phone was okay personally. The stereo speakers only sounded great if  the phone was tilted landscape. Then again I had already joined the cult of the Note and any phone without the S-pen would just not do for me but I can still be objective…lol.

Samsung in 2014 came out with a ‘lower’ version of the Note 3 and called it the Note 3 Neo. It had  the S-pen, a 5.5 inch Super AMOLED HD 720p screen , 8MP camera, 16GB storage, 2GB of RAM and all of the Note 3’s software features. The Note 3 Neo was made really different in that it sported the Samsung Exynos Hexa 5260 (6-core) processor. The processor in actuality was made up of a quad-core 1.3ghz Cortex A7 CPU and a dual-core 1.7ghz Cortex A15 CPU as well as support for HMP and a Mali-T624 GPU. GPU people refers to graphics.

Now we have the Note 4 which was announced at IFA on Sept 3rd, 2014. This 4th generation Note comes with some new features, yessir. I cannot really review the phone as I have not seen it yet but it seems to be getting some good reviews thus far. The Note 3 comes with the same size screen as the Note 3 but instead with better quality. The screen now has Quad HD Super AMOLED technology giving it a 2560×1440 resolution (about 500+ pixels per inch). Again the “premium” design was used but with a metal rim around the phone. The Note 4 comes with some of features of the Galaxy S5, of course, like the heartrate monitor on the  back (which can also be used to take pictures). Now HTC and Apple have heightened the consumers’ expectations of what a phone should feel like and so now a flagship phone has to have metal (oooooooh….). How about this, try dropping your iphone a few times and see how well those scrapes show up on your cool phone.

The S-Pen on the Note 4 has also been improved with more sensitivity. (double the amount making it 2,048 levels of pressure sensitivity). Supposedly this makes it feel more like writing with a real pen. I don’t know really but I will update with I get my hands on one. As far as gestures and UI stuff I have seen mentioned about a floating  thing going on much like the Facebook Chat that Facebook has now shoved down people’s throats.

The Camera has  gone from 13MP to 16MP and is not only a better camera in this point but it now clocks in at f1.9 (for all you photographers out there), which allows the camera to take in 60% more light making for better quality images. Also baked in is optical image stabilization. If you don’t know what that is here is something to help you understand: An optical image stabilizer, often abbreviated OIS, IS, or OS, is a mechanism used in a still camera or video camera that stabilizes the recorded image by varying the optical path to the sensor. This technology is implemented in the lens itself, or by moving the sensor as the final element in the optical path. The key element of all optical stabilization systems is that they stabilize the image projected on the sensor before the sensor converts the image into digital information.

All of the regular promises of improvements are included like battery life but it is too soon to tell how that panes out but let’s not forget the Note 4 will also come in another version, the Galaxy Note Edge. Those of you who want a Note 4 may want to wait for this bad boy to come out then spend that dough as this phone has a curved screen on the right side that can be used for notifications and other things. I will just let you watch the videos cause you just need to see it. Dude I like this one. If I try to upgrade it will be to the Note Edge definitely. I’m saying it is still the same phone. Maybe a lil smaller and the resolution would have to change a bit to allow for the curved part of the screen but technically the same phone. Enjoy the videos…

 

If you need to know the differences. Watch this video…

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Yaiba: Ninja Gaiden Z

When I first got wind of the game I was just looking for ninja images on google and pictures of this game came up. Now I didn’t know at first. I thought they were just images such as you would see on Deviantart.com but then I realize that these images were of a game. I was curious and so I looked further into the game and found a trailer of sorts. This trailer was actually the prologue of the game.

 

Seeing this prologue had my attention even more so I went and got it. After playing the game further Yaiba: Ninja Gaiden Z’s hero, seemed more of an Antihero…lol. The game is a hack-and-slash game with an unlikable star (Well depening on you of course. I’m sure some people will like him.) that has, well, its own sense of humor. There are numerous reviews of the game that talk it down stating for the most part that it is crass, stupid and not really funny. The characters in the game, their speech is rather naive. The game id full of profanity and sexual humor which can be appealing (actually these type of games do sell more), and games like South Park: The Stick of Truth and MadWorld delight in their lewdness with great success. Ninja Gaiden Z’s profanity and licentious imagery wants you to laugh. I was playing the game and caught a little laugh at this part here:




Yaiba Kamikaze

Yaiba who is very rough around the edges is pursuing his revenge against Ninja Gaiden star Ryu Hayabusa. Miss Monday, whose primary character traits are her monumental breasts which the game makes sure you see, is Yaiba’s guide in the game. Alarico “Rico” del Gonzo is the eccentric leader of Forge Industries, the company that revived and rebuilt Yaiba. My memory fails me at time and there was something mentioned regarding Gonzo that I copied “After six years of holding our dicks in our hands, finally that Spanish knobhead Del Gonzo authorized some action,” and get this later makes mention of his “blood-boner.” I like the comic-book art style and the initial gore are enough to inspire a momentary blood-boner, but sadly, the lacking dialogue is not the game’s biggest problem.

The action itself at times is a problem and leads me to believe that maybe Comcept and Spark Unlimited released it too soon. You know, it’s seem unfinished such as a beta release of a game would be. As cyberninja Yaiba Kamikaze, you fight through cartoon zombies using your sword, your metal fist, your flail, and once in awhile weapons that killed enemies drop, like a rocket launcher or electrified nunchuks. The action is satisfying. It is a button mashing type of game where just about every button press you get blood splattering all over your screen. Pretty cool actually. I liked watching the executions.

 

Mechannibal

The flail gives the combat a God of War feel, is useful for getting through large numbers of zombies at once. The flail doesn’t do a lot of damage but its appeal is its ability to allow you to make surrounding foes simultaneously vulnerable setting you up to make those gory executions that I like. You can make the executions one after another the push of a button when one execution pauses to move on to another. Watching the zombie heads fly into the air is and undead bodies being split in half at the torso are very cool and enjoyable. They make the game fun actually. As in any game they get sort of boring to watch but you can improve Yaiba as you go along in the game. Performing executions are also neccessary because doing them rewards you with red cubes that replenish your health.

The camera is a frequent problem, you are forced at times to move around and fight off unseen enemies without a good view of your surroundings. Jumping around across different thresholds while in combat gets annoying at times. It was really annoying fighting a mechanical boss that acts like a dog. The thing is huge and ends up blocking view of Yaiba, especially when you dash around behind it hidding you from view. I found myself dashing under it through its legs only to get slammed on cause I kept getting stuck under it. Unsure why at times, either the legs are in the way or something else that I just could not see. Dashing in the correct direction took some figuring especially when the thing turns around on you looking for you so you have to dash out in the right direction. That freaking thing shows up more often in the game which was annoying. This also moves me into my next point.

electric infected zombie

The level of difficulty, there are numerous foes some fling fire, some that sizzle with electricity, and some that puke bile in your direction but Ninja Gaiden Z takes the old school approach to adding difficulty to a game by throwing increasing numbers of these enemies into the arena and introducing old foes into the mix. The enemies too while fighting come off of with random cheap shots all the time that seem impossible to avoid I saying, blocking and countering certain attacks is possible, but it does not always work due to how quickly and randomly this mess plays out onscreen.

yngz_Holy_Roaster

Ninja Gaiden Z’s has a chemistry thing going to it which can cause more frustration. The flames of a holy roaster and biological spew of a blister sister cause interactions. The chemistry is okay at times like when you use it to solve the game’s mild puzzles, but there is a part in the game where you use static electricity to help eliminate some foes (I guess….they seemed to die quicker once I figured that out.) from the lightning storms that ignite when fire and lightning meet are more hazardous than the threats they alleviate. I walked into one and found that out. My first though due to the game’s notification was to walk into them but then I thought oh he is a cyborg that may not be the best idea. Some website said “Death is a frustration and not a teaching tool” but it just matters on the player really. I will say this though, the game’s main method of healing (execution health drops) is unreliable. The prompts to execute enemies might appear do appear but are a bit hard to catch. Yaiba though moves so fast and this makes them hard to catch. I found myself spamming the execution button while fighting through the zombies so I can catch the opportunities to execute. While some reviews found this as part of the game’s flaws while I just see it as one of those things you see on all fast-pace games.

Ninja Gaiden Z almost impairs itself in a way. The executions are satisfying but each chained execution is visually distinct leaving no connection to the others. They are basically like watching a video clip than showing off those ninja skills of the player. Ninja Gaiden Z’s parkour sequences are diminished I would say compared to the actual Ninja Gaiden game. I remember playing Ninja Gaiden and jumping was also a skill you had to learn but instead in Ninja Gaiden Z they jumping requires timing and the hitting the right button. Some parts though remind me of Ninja Gaiden. The jumps requiring at times what to look for so you know the right button to hit while the camera angle messes you up at times causing more deaths.

yngz_ryu_hayabusa

Keeping that “blood-boner” up maybe hard (lol) to do with the game’s annoyances but overall it is still fun to play. I wish the game had been out of the beta stage before they released it but, hey, what can you do? Do a review. I got a kick out of Yaiba and his vulgar attitude and the game’s sutle jokes. I read several reviews on the game and I concur somewhat with all of them but I also think having Ninja Gaiden in the name places a standard on it that it was not meant to accomplish. It’s like a phone having Windows name attached to it. Due to the old Windows Mobile and how it performed it had a bad taste to it so the now new Windows Phones that come out have to overcome that stigma even though Windows Phone now is a good phone O.S.. I do wish though Ninja Gaiden Z’s style had been applied to a better foundation or at least just put more work into it then bring it out. The original price tag of $60 I think was a bit high but then again probably necessary having the Ninja Gaiden name to it, not to mention Ryu makes an appearance in game. (Extra bills to pay to the original makers of Ninja Gaiden series)